Author Topic: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread  (Read 7328 times)

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Offline screwtape

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curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« on: October 03, 2011, 11:39:01 AM »
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Offline Azdgari

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #1 on: October 04, 2011, 09:55:42 AM »
If CG doesn't accept that objective morality exists, then L-Chain's argument cannot proceed.  He may need to start there.
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Offline Anfauglir

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #2 on: October 04, 2011, 10:04:43 AM »
If CG doesn't accept that objective morality exists, then L-Chain's argument cannot proceed.  He may need to start there.

And that's just for starters.  He also may need to consider in what way a moral system created by a god is Objective rather than Subjective to that particular god.  Satan, for example, could be considered to have an equally Objective moral system in the sense that L-Chain is using the term.

He would also need to show that these Objective moral values (whatever they may be) are a perfect match for the values espoused by the Christian god to have any hope of tying his "general god" to the Christian one.  So I think when he talks of objective morality, he needs to specify exactly what that includes.
Just because you've always done it that way doesn't mean it's not incredibly stupid.
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Offline Azdgari

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #3 on: October 04, 2011, 10:13:36 AM »
And that's just for starters.  He also may need to consider in what way a moral system created by a god is Objective rather than Subjective to that particular god.  Satan, for example, could be considered to have an equally Objective moral system in the sense that L-Chain is using the term.

Well, exactly, right?  L-Chain first needs to clarify what he means by "Objective" in the first place.  If he means something that does not depend on opinion for its veracity, then that rules out anything that depends on the opinion of a deity...
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Offline plethora

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #4 on: October 04, 2011, 10:28:04 AM »
The Euthyphro dilemmaWiki comes to mind:

"Is what is morally good commanded by God because it is morally good, or is it morally good because it is commanded by God?"

The first one would support morality as being objective, but not originating from god. In that case god is subject to the same objective moral law that we are, he's the middle man between us and morality.

In the second case, morality is dictated by god but cannot be objective. It is necessarily subjective and merely being imposed on us by him.

So L-Chain's claim that the existence of objective morality proves the existence of a god is flawed.
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Offline screwtape

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #5 on: October 04, 2011, 11:13:39 AM »
He's using the Table Manners Argument for god.  Child's play.
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Offline plethora

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #6 on: October 04, 2011, 11:28:14 AM »
^^  :D
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Offline screwtape

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #7 on: October 04, 2011, 11:36:15 AM »
yeah.  I have yet to witness a theist make the connection between Absolute Table Manners and Absolute Morals.

edit bake --> make.  duh.
« Last Edit: October 04, 2011, 01:19:18 PM by screwtape »
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Offline Historicity

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #8 on: October 04, 2011, 11:58:22 AM »
M, not N.

LAH HIGH-eem  means "To Life" in Hebrew.  It is often transllterated La Chaim.   He spells it L-Chaim.

EL Chain would be his porn star name.

Offline Azdgari

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #9 on: October 04, 2011, 12:22:53 PM »
Damn.  I've actually been reading it as "L-Chain" this whole time.  Oops!
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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #10 on: October 04, 2011, 01:26:09 PM »
As with the Timo & MiC thread, where morality is also the argument, morality has not been defined here either.  So it is likely L-Train will continue to talk about how Right&Wrong, Good&Evil cannot exist without it being imposed, and curiousgirl will talk about how social norms keep us functional as a society, and neither will really understand what the other is saying.
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Offline MathIsCool

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #11 on: October 04, 2011, 06:59:25 PM »
Ugh.

CuriousGirl's latest post exemplifies an annoying trait I've noticed when discussing the morality argument with (some) atheists - an inability (or unwillingness?) to follow a basic argument.[1]  L-Chaim presented the William Lane Craig[2] version of the moral argument:

(1) If God does not exist, objective moral values and duties do not exist.
(2) Objective moral values & duties do exist.
(3) Therefore, God exists.

A couple things to note here.  First, the contrapositive Wiki of (1) is "If objective moral values and duties exists, God exists."  Ergo, we have (1) "If objective moral values and duties exists, God exists." and (2) "Objective moral values and duties exist."  1 and 2 form a SyllogismWiki which conclusion is "God exists."  CuriousGirl therefore has to prove either 1 or 2 false to show that the moral argument is invalid.

To refute (1), If God does not exist, objective moral values and duties do not exist, CuriousGirl would have to show that (1) is false. In other words, she must show that, contrary to L-Chaim's claim, If God does not exist, objective moral values do exist. [3]  This is the famed "naturalistic basis for morality" that other apologists like me natter on about.  She writes:

There is a problem with this premise. I would say that unfortunately, you have it backwards if you think that God is the source of morality. If one looks at the Bible, which is supposed to be the source for evidence of God's "morality," one might be able to tell that the Biblical laws were due to the Self-Projection as God (SPAG) of Biblical authors.
...
Instead of concluding that your loving God made this law as part of his objective moral value system, it is more logical to conclude that the Biblical authors thought of women as property (hence the silver-paying) and they made a law that enabled men to treat women as such. Here in the modern-day US (where I am located), this would be thought of by society as abhorrent and archaic.

Look carefully at what happened here.  Instead of engaging with premise (1), CuriousGirl picks a verse out of the bible that she doesn't like, shows how a cursory surface look disagrees with current cultural values in the US, and then tell us that the point is won.  Clearly, it's not.  It's not even engaged.  It's not even discussed.  Just a bit of Bible-bashing, a conclusion with a link to an evolutionary just-so story about how morality might have evolved, and then she moves on.

Attempting to refute (2), Objective moral values & duties do exist, would entail CuriousGirl showing that objective moral values do not exist.  This has nothing to do with God.  She must show that the nihilistic (or, more technically, the Non-cognitivismWiki) position of morals not actually existing is correct.  Instead, she invokes the Euthyphro dilemna, which certainly has it's place in these kinds of discussions.... but this is not it.  Again, (2) has nothing to do with God, so why invoke the Euthyphro dilemna?  The Euthyphro dilemna deals with the supposed dilemna of the ontological foundation of morality and how God cannot be it.  It's fairly easy to split the horns of said dilemna, but again, L-Chaim need not even do that.  This discussion has no point when one is attempting to show the statement "Objective moral values & duties do exist" is false.  Again, the point isn't even discussed. It's as if L-Chaim said "Chickens are the greatest back-yard fowl ever!" and CuriousGirl responded with "no, weasels have five legs, not four."  The status of chickens reigning as kings over the backyard as the greatest fowl ever isn't really addressed by weasels, even if they do have five legs.  (And L-Chaim would be well served to not get into a discussion about how many legs weasels have, just as he can ignore CuriousGirls point about Euthyphro and his dilemna here because it doesn't engage with his original point at all.)

Therefore L-Chaim's point stands.  2 posts into this debate and he has effectivley won this debate.  CuriousGirl has failed to defend (by failing to even address) premises (1) and (2), and these lead inescapably to (3), God exists, by the rules of logical syllogisms.  Unfortunately, his victory isn't really based on strong arguments of his point. (Sorry, L-Chaim.)  It's just that CuriousGirl failed to engage in the points being discussed.  Instead she threw some Bible verses out there that she doesn't like, mentioned SPAG, duly invoked Euthyphro, mixed in some pop evolutionary thought about how morals evolved, and called it a day.  Almost certainly, I can expect most atheists on this board (with a few probable exceptions) to respond with the same treatment when replying to this post.

This isn't argumentation.  This is babble.  To call this a "debate" is akin to calling the talking head cacaphony on cable TV today "political discourse."[4]

Ugh.
 1. Some.  Not all.  I feel like I should give a shout-out here to Timo for his well reasoned responses in our debate on this board.
 2. I don't know if it's actually his.  I just know he uses it rather extensively.
 3. Technically, to prove this false, it would be enough to show objective moral values might exist if God does not.  L-Chaim is at the disadvantage here since CuriousGirl has such a wide range of positions to take.
 4. But then again, I guess we (here in the US anyways) do that too, don't we?
« Last Edit: October 04, 2011, 08:37:53 PM by MathIsCool »
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Offline Azdgari

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #12 on: October 04, 2011, 07:31:29 PM »
She need not prove (1) or (2) false.  She can simply reject them as not having been established.  The groundwork for the debate had not yet been laid before the debate was started.  And that is LC's fault for leaping forward without having laid that groundwork, because he is the one who picked his premises.

Quote
(1) If God does not exist, objective moral values and duties do not exist.
(2) Objective moral values & duties do exist.
(3) Therefore, God exists.

(1) assumes that there is a relationship between objective moral values[1].  This is not established.  Why not point that out?
(2) need not be accepted by CG.  It is up to the one claiming that they exist, to establish that they exist.  That's quite a task.

The debate cannot proceed as framed, because the premises upon which LC's argument rests are not accepted and have not been established.  My suggestion would be for LC to re-start the debate in order to establish (2), and then if successful start yet another to establish the linkage I mentioned for (1).  Then he will be in a position to start this one.

Alternately, they can do it here.  Why make a new thread, eh?  But they both need to agree step backward and do that.  I doubt CG would mind doing so; would LC?  And if so, then why?
 1. "Objective value" being incohernt in the first place...
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Offline Azdgari

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #13 on: October 04, 2011, 07:33:15 PM »
An analogous example of this for you, MIC.  Let's say someone posed this syllogism:

(1) If faster-than-light travel does not exist, other universes do not exist.
(2) Other universes do exist.
(3) Therefore, FTL travel exists.


What do you think would be the appropriate response, MIC?
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Offline MathIsCool

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #14 on: October 04, 2011, 08:35:36 PM »
She need not prove (1) or (2) false.  She can simply reject them as not having been established.
She could have.  But she didn't.  She didn't even address them.  Therefore LC's bare assertion, offered as it is without any reasoning behind it, stands.  LC could have said "Unicorns are purple!  Them and their leprechaun riders!!" and with an analogous CG refutation, he'd be winning that debate too.[1]

What do you mean by "(1) assumes that there is a relationship between objective moral values?"

(2) has been asserted and not refuted.  Therefore it stands.  An adequate response could have been as simple as "Yeah?  Prove it!"  She didn't even do that, but instead launched into some Euthyphro argument.  I swear, sometimes it seems like you guys (not you, Azdgari, but some atheists) think "Euthyphro" is some sort of kryptonite to us.  Say his name and we fall down, gasping for air.

You say "The debate cannot proceed as framed, because the premises upon which LC's argument rests are not accepted and have not been established."  I agree in that it can't proceed.  LC made some bare assertions (with unfounded premises you claim).  CG didn't refute them, or bring up any unfounded premises.  She didn't even address them.  LC wins.  LC could be (and probably will be) generous, but really the fault here is with CG to not engage at all with LC.

An analogous example of this for you, MIC.  Let's say someone posed this syllogism:

(1) If faster-than-light travel does not exist, other universes do not exist.
(2) Other universes do exist.
(3) Therefore, FTL travel exists.


What do you think would be the appropriate response, MIC?

Here's one line I'd go with.  It'd take me three sentences:[2]

The contrapositive of (1) is "If other universes exist, FTL travel exists."  Modern physicists have shown what a multiverse would look like, and there exists at least one conception of a multiverse in which FTL travel does not exist.[3]  Premise (1)'s contrapositive is false, therefore premise (1) is false, and the syllogism fails.  Quo Erat Demonstratum.

Here's another possibility, only two sentences:

You say (2) Other universes exist.  Prove it.

A refutation wouldn't look like:
"That guy at CERN who measured the neutrino FTL business?  Yeah I know him, he totally showers like once a month, if that.  Einstein said E=MC2!!  FTL travel doesn't happen."

In any case, it's their debate, not ours.  Let's try not to get a parallel debate started in the comment thread. :P
 1. Even though he failed to establish the necessary premise to unicorns being purple, that unicorns do, in fact, exist.
 2. Four if you count the QED
 3. Imagine an appropriate citation here.  Really, most conceptions of the multiverse avoid FTL travel, so a citation would be pretty easy to find.
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Offline Azdgari

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #15 on: October 04, 2011, 08:50:25 PM »
Yeah, she did sort of leap ahead and get muddled up in it, didn't she?  I hope they can recover the debate.  It's not going to progress well from here, as things stand.

And you're right, there's little reason to have a parallel debate here.  Though I wasn't meaning to start one...
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Offline Azdgari

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #16 on: October 04, 2011, 11:39:05 PM »
By the way, just like to point this out, for CG's sake more than anyone's...

Quote from: MIC
To refute (1), If God does not exist, objective moral values and duties do not exist, CuriousGirl would have to show that (1) is false. In other words, she must show that, contrary to L-Chaim's claim, If God does not exist, objective moral values do exist.

Nah, she has a better option than that, one I alluded to in my earlier post to MIC.  She can show that if God does exist, then objective moral value still does not exist.  Mind you, it'd be useful to have a definition of "objective", and "moral" and/or "value", first...
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Offline jaimehlers

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #17 on: October 05, 2011, 12:09:58 AM »
Yeah, you have to define the terms for them to have any meaning.

Offline Anfauglir

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #18 on: October 05, 2011, 05:38:02 AM »
I see L-Chain has said "these are the terms - accept them or refute them".  Doesn't sound like any way of presenting an argument I have ever heard.  "Here is my assertion - you must disprove it before we can move on"!

He also says "By objective i mean not influenced by personal feelings or interpretations)".  I'm wondering how he can therefore come to the conclusion that they are Objective?  If (say) an ancient Aztec said "killing children is clearly fine - our gods say so", by what argument would L-Chain prove that they are Objectively wrong?
Just because you've always done it that way doesn't mean it's not incredibly stupid.
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Offline Azdgari

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #19 on: October 05, 2011, 06:14:09 AM »
Indeed, Anf.  It's like my mock-syllogism to MIC:  Maybe the premises can be conclusively refuted, but it's hardly guaranteed, and if they aren't then it doesn't mean my argument succeeds.

Hell, what L-Chaim is doing isn't qualitatively different from the following (in a "God is real" argument):

"Here is my syllogism...

1. A god exists.
2. If a god exists, then it is Christian god.
3. From 1 and 2:  The Christian god exists!

Now, accept my premises, or refute them - those are your options!"

By removing any possibility that he will actually support his premises, L-Chaim is indicating that he is not willing to debate them, and - I suspect - that he is not capable of debating them.
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Offline L-Chaim

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #20 on: October 05, 2011, 06:53:19 AM »
Indeed, Anf.  It's like my mock-syllogism to MIC:  Maybe the premises can be conclusively refuted, but it's hardly guaranteed, and if they aren't then it doesn't mean my argument succeeds.

Hell, what L-Chaim is doing isn't qualitatively different from the following (in a "God is real" argument):

"Here is my syllogism...

1. A god exists.
2. If a god exists, then it is Christian god.
3. From 1 and 2:  The Christian god exists!

Now, accept my premises, or refute them - those are your options!"

By removing any possibility that he will actually support his premises, L-Chaim is indicating that he is not willing to debate them, and - I suspect - that he is not capable of debating them.

The above is bogus

The syllogism is logically valid so all this talk of support your premise is futile, if you have a problem with the premise.... show me where the problem is, you have a problem with the terms ? show me what the problem is ? i put forth the argument and you want me to refute it also ?

I put forward CS Lewis's argument from morality. The premise's are wide open to attack. Once the premises are refuted then the debate will begin. 

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #21 on: October 05, 2011, 07:23:32 AM »
bm
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Offline Azdgari

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #22 on: October 05, 2011, 07:27:17 AM »
Why are you so resistant to the idea of supporting your premises?

I would have expected that you would be eager to do so, since that would establish your argument.  Instead, you are taking the lazy way out.  Telling.
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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #23 on: October 05, 2011, 07:29:21 AM »
i put forth the argument and you want me to refute it also ?

No. You need to support your premises.

Your premises are positive claims that need to be backed up by evidence. If you cannot support your premises with evidence then the other party has every justification to reject them outright.

Otherwise here's what you're doing:

1) If an invisible dragon does not exist, objectively funny jokes do not exist
2) Objectively funny jokes do exist
3) Therefore, an invisible dragon exists.

Fact is, L-Shame, you can't refute the above premises. Does that mean you should accept this argument? Fuck no.

Support your premises.
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Offline Anfauglir

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #24 on: October 05, 2011, 08:23:46 AM »
The syllogism is logically valid.....

Yes, it is.  So what?

1) All cats are blue.
2) I own a cat.
3) Therefore my cat is blue.

is ALSO an entirely valid argument.  Problem is, it is not a SOUND argument, since at least one of its premises are false.

Perhaps only validity counts to you?  If so then fine - your argument is valid, well done, have 100 Quatloos.  But you'll have to give them straigh back to me because my argument on blue cats is precisely as valid.

For there to be ANY point to your argument, you need to prove that your premises are true, which would then - and ONLY then - make the argument sound.  At the moment, its as if I am requiring YOU to prove that all cats are NOT blue (AND that I do NOT own a cat), rather than me proving my premises to you, which is the usual method where there is disagreement.
Just because you've always done it that way doesn't mean it's not incredibly stupid.
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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #25 on: October 05, 2011, 08:25:43 AM »
The above is bogus

The syllogism is logically valid so all this talk of support your premise is futile, if you have a problem with the premise.... show me where the problem is, you have a problem with the terms ? show me what the problem is ? i put forth the argument and you want me to refute it also ?

I put forward CS Lewis's argument from morality. The premise's are wide open to attack. Once the premises are refuted then the debate will begin.
No.  Once the premises are refuted, your argument is dead.  The premises are your argument, they form the basis of it, and as such you do not have the luxury of waiting to support them until after your argument has been blown out of the water.  If you had an unsupported wall, and someone fired a cannon shell at it, do you think you would be able to go and put supports in place after the wall was knocked down?

The whole point is that you should support your premises when you state them, not wait to support them until they've been knocked down.

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #26 on: October 05, 2011, 08:27:44 AM »

Look carefully at what happened here.  Instead of engaging with premise (1), CuriousGirl picks a verse out of the bible that she doesn't like, shows how a cursory surface look disagrees with current cultural values in the US, and then tell us that the point is won.  Clearly, it's not.  It's not even engaged.  It's not even discussed.  Just a bit of Bible-bashing, a conclusion with a link to an evolutionary just-so story about how morality might have evolved, and then she moves on.

That she doesn't like? Cursory surface look? You've got to be kidding. Clear evidence that morality is subjective depending on the time and place you live. If you think your daughter getting raped means $13[1] to you,  :o but there are people in this world, including Atheists that have better subjective morals, than your objective ones.

You're taught in Church: Adultry is a married person having sex with someone they're not married to. Infedelity is a married person having sex with someone they're not married to. However Infedelity can result in Divorce, and according to the same Law of Moses, Adultry is punishable by death. So what's the difference? It all has to do with if the ox[2] is married or not. If she is, adultry, if not infededilty. So therefore it is impossible for a married woman to commit infedelity, and for an unmarried woman to commit adultry. Dude wants a sex buddy? Fine, she's called concubine. The woman wants one? She gets stoned to death.

I'll go on: If a woman catches her husband with another woman and kills him, she is to be put to death like the oxen she is, like you would for one that has gored a man. If he catches her with another man and kills her, he is exercising his god given right because she is HIS PROPERTY.

If a man and woman get divorced[3] he is free to remarry, but if she does, everytime she lays with her new husband she is commiting Adultry against her first husband because God considers them to still be married. Till he dies, then his sperm magically leaves her body.   :?

The Bile was written by superstitious men that thought women were nothing but property. You're claiming the morality of ignorant goat herders as "objective" when it's nothing of the sort.

She just picked out that one verse. There are many many more like that in the Bible. It is nothing of a "cursory surface look." An indepth examination of the Bible will clearly show what primitive men thought of women.
 1. for the "New Shekel" if by weight in silver $170.
 2. yes, the bible refers to women as oxen
 3. remember, because He cheated on Her!
« Last Edit: October 05, 2011, 08:34:02 AM by TruthSeeker »

Offline Aaron123

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #27 on: October 05, 2011, 02:29:16 PM »
L-Chaim needs to articulate his points better.

If God does not exist there is no ultimate grounding for morality. Morality becomes subjective and arbitrary IF God does not Exist. If atheism is true why should anyone not live according to their own standards of ethics they deem true for themselves ? If there is no moral law giver then there is no objective standard outside the moral agent to hold them accountable to the laws.

For example, what does an "subjective and arbitrary" world without god looks like?  How is this different from the world we live in currently?

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God as the moral law giver has endowed us with the A priori knowledge (knowledge independent of experience) of the natural law, The natural law is an ordinance of reason, for the common good,

How did a moral law giver "endowed us" with knowledge of things?

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think of the natural law against murder. It is not arbitrary, but a rule that the moral agent can grasp as right. It does not  serve some special interest, but the universal good, it is not a secret rule, for God has arranged his creation so that every rational being knows about it.

This one is interesting, as killing is half of what god does in the bible.  If murder is wrong, then why defend a god that commits genocide?  I've heard of the 'killing' VS 'murdering' argument, but that sounds like semantics to me, and an indirect acknowlegment that some things are subjective.

Being a Christian, I've made my decision. That decision offers no compromise; therefore, I'm closed to anything else.

Offline pianodwarf

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Re: curiousgirl and L-Chaim: The discussion thread
« Reply #28 on: October 05, 2011, 02:52:47 PM »
The previous post is a more expansive restatement of your original premise, not a validation of it.

My argument is this...God is the moral Law giver so objective moral values are only grounded in the law giver without whom morals as i see it would become subjective.

I'm not getting what the problem is here, this is as basic as i can put the argument if it's not understood then the debate ends.

The problem is that you are claiming that morals can be objective only if they are issued by God.  You are then asked to back up this claim, but instead of doing so, you simply restate it.  You need to explain why morality can be objective only if it comes from God.  If you don't see why you need to do this, then yes, you're right, the debate is probably not going to progress.
[On how kangaroos could have gotten back to Australia after the flood]:  Don't kangaroos skip along the surface of the water? --Kenn